MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 2,780 this week

Kid Auto Races at Venice (1914)

5.8
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 5.8/10 from 1,577 users  
Reviews: 20 user | 16 critic

The Tramp wanders into and disrupts the filming of a go-kart race.

Director:

Writer:

0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

Free at Internet Archive

IMDb Picks: June

Visit our IMDb Picks section to see our recommendations of movies and TV shows coming out in June, brought to you by Swiffer.

Visit the IMDb Picks section

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 39 titles
created 06 Jun 2012
 
list image
a list of 40 titles
created 10 Sep 2013
 
a list of 33 titles
created 6 months ago
 
a list of 41 titles
created 4 months ago
 
a list of 28 titles
created 1 month ago
 

Related Items

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Kid Auto Races at Venice (1914)

Kid Auto Races at Venice (1914) on IMDb 5.8/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Kid Auto Races at Venice.

User Polls

Videos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

An out-of-work swindler takes a job as a reporter. After witnessing a car go over cliff, he grabs a rival reporter's camera and races to the newspaper office to enter the photo as his own. ... See full summary »

Director: Henry Lehrman
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Emma Bell Clifton, Chester Conklin
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

In a hotel lobby an inebriated Charlie runs into an elegant lady, gets tied hup in her dog's leash, and falls down. He later runs into her in the hotel corridor, locked out of her room. ... See full summary »

Director: Mabel Normand
Stars: Mabel Normand, Charles Chaplin, Chester Conklin
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Charlie is a clumsy waiter in a cheap cabaret, suffering the strict orders from his boss. He'll meet a pretty girl in the park, pretending to be a fancy ambassador, despite the jealousy of her fiancée.

Director: Mabel Normand
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Mabel Normand, Dan Albert
Laughing Gas (1914)
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

Charlie pretends to be a dentist though he is only his assistant. When a patient can't stop laughing from the anesthesia Charlie knocks him out with a club. He is sent to the drug store, ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Fritz Schade, Alice Howell
The Masquerader I (1914)
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Charlie is an actor in a film studio. He messes up several scenes and is tossed out. Returning dressed as a lady, he charms the director. Even so, Charlie never makes it into film, winding up at the bottom of a well.

Director: Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle, Chester Conklin
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  

A very plastered fella follows a pretty woman home, and proceeds to make a nuisance of himself.

Director: George Nichols
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle, Peggy Pearce
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

Charlie attempts to meet his favorite movie actress at the Keystone Studio, but does not win friends there.

Director: George Nichols
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle, Peggy Pearce
Tango Tangle (1914)
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

Out of costume, Charlie is a clean-shaven dandy who, somewhat drunk, visits a dance hall. There the wardrobe girl has three rival admirers: the band leader, one of the musicians, and now Charlie.

Director: Mack Sennett
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Ford Sterling, Roscoe 'Fatty' Arbuckle
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

A silly aristocrat who believes he's been jilted attempts suicide, but is saved from death and reunited with his fiancee.

Directors: George Nichols, Mack Sennett
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Edgar Kennedy, Minta Durfee
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

Charlie and another man compete in trying to help a young lady cross a muddy street. The rival finds a wooden plank which Charlie takes from him. They fight over an umbrella belonging to ... See full summary »

Director: Henry Lehrman
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Ford Sterling, Chester Conklin
Comedy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Charlie is hanging around in the park, finding problems with a jealous suitor, a man who thinks that Charlie has robbed him a watch, a policeman and even a little boy, all because our friend can't stop snooping.

Directors: Joseph Maddern, Charles Chaplin
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Minta Durfee, Edgar Kennedy
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Accosted by a masher in the park and unable to motivate husband Charlie into taking action, Mabel gets him a boxing mannequin to sharpen his fighting skills.

Director: Mack Sennett
Stars: Charles Chaplin, Mabel Normand, Mack Swain
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Henry Lehrman ...
Film Director
Edit

Storyline

Charlie, dressed as a tramp for the first time, goes to a baby-cart race in Venice, California. He causes a great deal of trouble and confusion, both on off the track (getting in the way of the cameraman) and on (interfering with the race). He succeeds in irritating both the participants and the public. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Short | Comedy

Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

7 February 1914 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Pest  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Ontario)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

This film was shot in 45 minutes at a go-cart race. See more »

Connections

Featured in Star Power: The Creation of United Artists (1998) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Chaplin introduces himself to the world.
7 April 2007 | by (Luoyang, China) – See all my reviews

There is some disagreement over whether or not this is really the first film in which Chaplin performed as the beloved Tramp, since apparently Mabel's Strange Predicament was filmed a month earlier (although released two days later), but the interest of the film as the first time that audiences saw his famous character, as well as the fact that he was clearly still learning about it himself, remains clear. This was long before the times of screenplays and film scripts, and it is clear from watching the film that it is completely ad-libbed, but what is also clear is not only the talent but also the symbolism and the foreshadowing of Chaplin's later career, which Chaplin could not even have known he was doing himself.

A lot of people have made the mistake of judging this film based on the quality of Chaplin's later work, which is ridiculous not only because the film was made during such an embryonic period of film history, but also because less than a half a year before it was made, Chaplin was acting on stage in England and knew absolutely nothing about film-making. Only a few years before this film was made, a film that depicted a group of people simply walking past the camera or people jumping into a lake was considered successful. The very thought of a "moving picture" had itself not lost its sense of being a novelty, so this film, if anything, was ahead of its time.

What is also worth noting is that, in the world's first look at Chaplin's most famous character, we get such a clear sense of his love of the crowd and his desire to be in front of the camera. It is very important when watching these early films to keep in mind the historical context in which they were made, and not only the films made by Chaplin but from anyone else who was making them during this period. This is the very beginning of film-making in Los Angeles, a rare look at one of the cinema's biggest talents literally learning his talent on camera in a young Hollywood. To write the film off because of simple comedy or time-damaged quality is absurd.

First of all, I am immediately fascinated by the film because of the fact that it was filmed in Venice, California, where I lived until about two months ago. Nothing is recognizable, since it was filmed 90 years ago and most of the setting is covered by crowds of people, but it should also be noted that Chaplin is literally trying on the costume which would soon make him one of the most famous people in the world, and in this six-minute comedy he is wandering around in a film learning his own act. That people today immediately demand high-budget quality from a film like this is ludicrous, to say the least.

It's also interesting to consider the fact that, while the film is very, very simple and the improvised comedy is not complex in any way, it is also very real and fits perfectly as an introduction to Chaplin as an actor and the Tramp as an everyday character. Watch any live, on-location news broadcast today and look at what any jerk standing behind the camera is trying to do, and the realism of some guy at the auto races, the Tramp, wandering in front of the camera and mugging makes even more sense. It's also interesting to see the people in the background, curious about this new film thing, obviously staring directly at the camera and watching the filming.

Chaplin, as he did in Making A Living, his first film, plays a bit of an unlikable character, but only unlikable as compared to what the Tramp would later become. He was a cheat and a swindler in Making A Living, while here he is just an annoying passer-by who won't go away. The film is book-ended by odd clippings of a note to "his best girl," and it is unclear why he "made tracks for the track," but for whatever reason, he was there and made it his mission to be in front of the camera of an increasingly irritated cameraman as much as possible.

The cameraman that Charlie is constantly blocking is played by Henry Lehrman, who directed the first few of Chaplin's comedies and with whom Chaplin never had a very positive relationship, either on screen or off. So many people are immediately put off by the technical crudity or stylistic simplicity or physical decay of films like this, but I think that they are even more fascinating for reasons like this. Filmed more than 90 years ago, it is still a clear look at Chaplin's budding career, both on and off the screen.

Only a few months later, he would begin directing his own films and his nearly unmatched career in film-making would be launched. Anyone with even a mild interest in film history or silent films should not miss this one, as it is a major landmark in cinematic history and the career of one of its biggest stars. For those of you that demand complex plots and polished film-making, maybe you should stick to watching modern film.


16 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Technically NOT Chaplin's first appearance as the Tramp. directorfitzy17
just heard my *what?* won't pass the censor? tinkerchel
Discuss Kid Auto Races at Venice (1914) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?